A beautifully touching story with several twists and ‘oh my’ moments. A reflection and testament to the strength of the human spirit, yet with our own vulnerabilities when facing mounting pressures, taking that deep breath, and having to say ‘goodbye’ to someone we cherish. Deeply heart-wrenching, yet very strong with a powerful message for all of us when battling our own emotions and insecurities while comforting a beloved soul.
I first saw Ellyn's book mentioned on a friend's Facebook page. I too had looked for books on the subject of losing an adult child. My son was 28. He left his physical body on July 5, 2019. I knew I would start reading the book and would probably get distracted and put it down only to finish it later, or not at all. This was not the case. I found myself not being able to put it down.
Reading the book was like reading into parts of Ellyn's journal. It was like I was reading my own journal and experiencing the same things she faced with the loss of her son. Very touching and inspiring. Thank you Ellyn for being so open and vulnerable enough to share with others.
This may be the most authentic-feeling memoir I’ve ever read. In Grateful for the Color Blue, Ellyn Wolfe chronicles her life from her son Rob’s terrifying diagnosis through the present day, fourteen years later. This is a debut work, beautifully written, meticulously edited. She kept a journal during this time, so her memories are as clear as if it were unfolding in the present. Which is wrenching, of course, but also lends authenticity as she describes her journey. In Grateful, we see a thoughtful, sensitive woman learning how to live in a world where grief will never leave, only recede. She’s adept at rich description, as when she walks the beach at her home in Massachusetts, visits remote and wild places in Oregon with her brother and nephew, and endures Los Angeles and Boston. Even struggling with heartache, she tries, and tries again, to reason with her life and arrive at new ways of seeing. This is the true value of any memoir, and Ellyn delivers, taking us through the unimaginable, sharing her journey, showing us how she survived, and thus offering a template. A lovely portrayal of the resiliency of the human spirit.
In "Grateful for the Color Blue," Ellyn Wolfe tells of her odyssey through Hell and back; from her son's diagnosis through her struggle to reenter life following his death, to a fulfilling new life that bears little resemblance to the previous rat race she called living.
As a therapist, this is not the sort of story I would usually choose for bedtime reading, but I assure the reader this is anything but a trudge through a swamp of morose musings. I was riveted from the first page by the courage, compassion and humor that permeates every line of this fascinating account.
Set in New England and Los Angeles, California, Wolfe transports the reader by vivid word pictures from coast to coast, from season to season, with the unobtrusive skill of a talented writer. Thoroughly rewarding read.
Ellyn Wolfe has captured the agony of losing a loved one with words that will touch you deeply. Her experience dealing with the loss of her son to cancer when he was only in his early 30s is heartbreaking, but she has been willing to share with readers the depths of the roller coaster of emotions she endured in an incredibly touching and compelling style. I wish this book had been there when I lost my sister to a brain tumor at age 34. It would have been such a comfort, and I can't recommend Grateful For The Color Blue highly enough.
5 rating = outstanding
· Author has thought a lot about settings and their impacts on scenes. She mentions often about sitting and being still, which connects us to one of her core values and coping mechanisms. When her son is diagnosed, author creates a standout moment where Susan’s shoulder’s ‘quiver’ as he delivers the news. This one movement tells us so much about the care she has for Rob, and while he is being brave, she foreshadows his battle.
· The words ‘I love you’ rise from a dusty place and pulse with emotion. Grief can pull humanity out of people, and I’m teary remembering this beautiful scene. ‘I’m fighting, I’m fighting’ unleashed whatever restraint this reader had with sadness and tears.
· The author has the energy of someone who has a lot to say and holds tight to her edges in discerning where she goes with her memories. Beautiful and heartbreaking. Well done.
· Good use of setting and sensory details to build presence in scenes. Author does a fine job of making a setting interesting, and often surprising.
· Dialogue stands out in realistic speech patterns and differentiated personalities. Nice job.
· Excellent transitions between chapters, carrying the pace forward and keeping the reader’s engagement and growing care for this author. We get lovely settings and sensory details such as the colors of flowers in the garden, switching us into the fresh air of a natural setting. Smart contrasts and effects. Well done.
· We feel for the author’s collection of losses. Excellent work here.